• Published 8th Apr 2013
  • 947 Views, 59 Comments

The Unwilling Command - Chryo93

When Changelings invade Canterlot, the Princesses execute a plan to bring their subjects to safety long enough to prepare for a war the likes of which Equestria has not seen for many years...

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Back Tracking

I waited in the car for a short while, thinking back to the last time I'd been to Club PON3

I had been unemployed for a few months and had decided to visit with some family in a city where I could blow off some steam. Unfortunately, they didn't have enough room to accommodate me, but I was fortunate enough to meet up with a man who owned a sound technician contractor company called Main Track Audio. I eventually got a job from him, initially as a warehouse worker, but I was transferred to a tech assistant position a few months later when he caught me trying to help one of the company's techies plan out a configuration for a show in Beverly Hills. After a brief argument and a few choice explanations, he had remained silent for several minutes before telling me to go with the techie on the job, "just in case he needs help," as my boss, Luke, put it.

For the next several weeks, I was assigned to various technicians as an assistant. The venues ranged from simple high school dances to full blown concerts for rising bands. Late October rolled around, and I was looking forward to Samhain, or, as everyone else called it, Halloween. I'm a believer of a very old variation of what could be called a Welsh pagan religion. Everyone at MTA called me a druid, though I tried to stop them by explaining a bunch of useless information about genuine druids and their historical significance. I gave up after the first week when Luke told me that it was really meant to be the easiest way to find out who someone was looking for. Thus my title became "the Druid" in our company. I was in a bit of a state of confusion this evening, however. I guess that more explanation would be in order at this moment.

During my little ordeal before I found work, I had finally succumbed to peer pressure and started watching My Little Pony: Friendship is Magic on YouTube. I went through a brief phase of denial before going through every episode that I could find over the course of a few days. I couldn't explain why, but my favorite character of the entire series was a nameless background pony that had appeared Season 1 Episode 14. I did a little research and noticed that she, as I found out that the DJ pony was in fact female, like almost every other character in the show, had been named by the fandom as DJ PON3, or, less commonly, Vinyl Scratch. I thought that the technology of the MLP-verse was no farther than steam-powered devices, but quickly ignored my wandering thoughts.

I shook my head, focusing on my current job. My friend, Enrique, had asked for me to come along to a new club that had opened in Burbank, well outside our usual service area. According to Luke, however, they were paying extra for our services. Ricky and I were on the 101 heading to Burbank when I finally asked him a question.

"Where the hell are we going anyway?" I bluntly said.

Ricky laughed a little before responding. "You might get a kick out of this, brony boy," I narrowed my eyes at him with that comment. "Apparently this place is called, get this, Club PON3. Just like your little fictional girlfriend..." He nudged my side over this, which I responded to by smacking him upside the head.

"So someone, who may or may not be a brony, named their club just like a character from a cartoon." I snapped. "You could at least be a little conscientious of my discomfort with that little tidbit... Jackass." I turned away from Ricky, staring out the window to the illuminated Los Angeles skyline.

We continued in relative silence for a short wile before my boredom kicked in and I pulled out a CD case from my bag. I rifled through my burned CD's before finding the one that had a particular track that I wanted blaring through the sound system Ricky had installed the week before. I mostly picked this one to piss him off, but I also liked to rap along with the lyrics. I prided myself in being able to speak even a small amount of Russian, one of my family's many native languages from generations before. As the lyrics kicked in, I started doing my best impression of the music video while rapping with Seryoga. I couldn't dance to save my life, but my ability to mimic anything that I saw or heard with enough practice more than made up for it. The first verse came up and I went off in the deepest voice I could, matching the track word for word.

Ricky just bobbed his head to the beat and cranked the bass up, causing us to both feel the beat through the seats. I didn't stop as the second verse came in. I matched the whole song, before we finally rolled up on the club, which had yet to open for the night. I looked at the clock on the dashboard, which show half past six. We had a few hours to set up, but needed to work fast. I pulled out my iPod and switched over to some loud tracks, starting with some Skrillex, the calming piano resounding through my ears before switching to the rise and the first bass drop. I started carrying the heaviest equipment from the back of the van, bringing it inside and placing it wherever Ricky pointed. In less than an hour, I'd taken out the pieces of his setup, which would be synchronized with the club DJ's own turntable setup.

We were greeted by the assistant manager of the club, a pretty woman with slightly tanned skin, a short, skinny build and long black hair that seemed as if it had been prepared for hours so that not one strand would be out of place. The part about her that struck me odd was that she seemed to be dressed more for a night out to watch an orchestra, as opposed to managing a club. When she spoke, it had the slight refinement of a British accent that had been Americanized.

"Are you two the technicians we were told to expect?" She asked. I raised my eyebrow at Ricky, who shrugged in response.

Enrique spoke first, before I could say anything stupid that would get us in trouble. "Actually, I'm the tech. This guy," He pointed at me. "Is my assistant. He usually helps with the setup. I have to say, though, you have all the speakers we could possibly want here, which makes our jobs easier." At that last word, I poked Ricky in the rib with the handle of my screwdriver, eliciting a small yelp of pain and a giggle from the woman.

I spoke, discarding any of my formality in favor for getting our job done. "What genius here means to say, Miss...?"


I stopped for a second, then shook my head briefly before continuing. "...Miss Octavia, we have everything ready to go at a moments notice. I just need to make sure everything was hooked up properly, or else your DJ may have one short show."

"Ah, very well. I can go find her for you, if you like?" She seemed hesitant until I gestured for her to lead the way. "Lets go see if we can find Vinyl anywhere, shall we?" Octavia walked down a hall, and I followed at arms length, before we both stopped in front of a door that had a plate on it that said "MANAGER", obviously the office we were looking for. She knocked on the door before opening it. "Vinyl? The technicians are here, one of them needs to do an inspection before they power up anything. Would you be so kinda as to show him around?"

I heard a female voice from in the office swear briefly before someone exited. She was dressed exactly the same as I'd described her before, but details make an identity to me. On her left arm, I could make out a digital-style tattoo that read "PON3." These weren't her most defining features, however. What caught and held my attention were her eyes, bright red and slightly bleary. I figured she had been napping before we arrived. Coupled with her crimson eyes was the craziest blue hair I'd ever seen. I couldn't help but make mental connections between her and the pony from my favorite show. When she waved a hand in front of my face, I was drawn out of my minor fan-boy stupor and switched back to business mode.

I pulled out a checklist and walkie talkie before finally speaking. "We need to make sure that Ricky's console is compatible with your sound system." I showed Vinyl the clipboard with the extensive steps we would have to go through. When her eyes widened and her mouth gaped a little, I felt the need to calm her down. "Don't worry, I know it seems like a lot, but it goes fast. If anything, I think Ricky is doing the first few for power distribution as we speak." I laughed a little as Vinyl grinned sheepishly, the blush on her face visible, even in the dim lighting of the hallway.

She finally spoke for the first time as she put on these crazy purple glasses, which forced my mind to again make the comparisons between this woman and her pony counterpart. Now I seemed to be looking at Vinyl Scratch in the flesh, but with hands and feet instead of hooves. My thoughts were disrupted when I felt the clipboard leave my hands. I looked to see that Vinyl had taken it from my hand. "So we just need to test the output for all the speakers in the club? No problem!"

I shook my head ruefully as she lead me through the club, I kept Ricky on the radio as we walked around. Vinyl seemed to favor bass and subs overall, a girl after my own heart. We finished fairly quickly, but Vinyl had noticed a loose cable near her station. She asked if I could fix it while she opened up the club, which I obliged to do. As she walked off, it seemed like it had been deliberately wired wrong. This made me wonder whether Vinyl just wanted to see if I knew what I was doing. The story is the same beyond that.

I turned on my stereo and opened up all of its channels while rolling down the Evo's windows. I flipped through my main CD and found Epic Wub Time Remixed. I opened my door, and moved to stand outside while first drop came, causing several car alarms to go off. I stood off to the side, a grin painted across my face that seemed to match Vinyl's. She almost seemed to recognize the voices just like her's and Octavia's, but just continued to listen to the wubs, which continued to make car alarms go off. As the song drew to a close, I walked around and remotely turned off the car, closed the door, and rolled up the windows. I stood directly in front of Vinyl before pointing the remote back toward the car, clicking the lock button and eliciting a beep.

"Max Cross, at your service, Miss Vinyl." I said, reaching my hand out. She took it and instead of shaking it, she pulled me into a tight hug. I tried getting free, but she had a death grip on my torso. I wondered at this point how I could loosen her grip until I felt a slight tightness against my cargo pants. I was desperate now to get loose, so as to avoid any potential embarrassment. The gods were probably laughing at me when Vinyl moved even closer.

"Long time, no see, Bass Drop!" She said happily. "Now hug me back or you aren't going to get free." She finally moved so close that I accidentally poked her. I could feel my face turn red and my whole body's temperature skyrocket. There was even a small amount of steam rolling off my hands and face in the cool winter air. "Oh..." She stopped for a second, leaning back a little while still holding onto me, before grinning devilishly. "Someone likes the Vinyl, does he?" I found the sky very interesting as she still maintained a grip on me. I finally gave in, but decided to let her know that she wasn't the only one who could play that game. I returned the embrace, and let one of my hands venture downward until I felt her jeans. I pinched her just below the waist, managing to make her yelp in surprise, jumping away.

I waited a few seconds before looking back at Vinyl. She was blushing almost as much as me at this point. We made eye contact and instead of looking away again, I raised my glasses and gave her a half-lidded stare. "I believe we can avoid mentioning this ever again..."

She nodded silently before running to the entrance, briefly turning around at the door to wave at me to come inside. As I walked in, I heard Enrique's ringtone from my pocket. I answered his call.

"Che cosa voi?" I yelled into the phone, irritated that he had just ruined my good mood.

Ricky swore a bit before answering. "Dude, where'd you go? I have a bit of bad news..."

I paused for a few seconds, then saw a car speeding down the road. "Mikael got loose?" I asked.

"How did you..." Ricky began before I cut him off.

"Because he's here. Tell the cops." I said before pulling out my pistol. I identified Strauss as he skidded to a stop and jumped out of the car.

"Did you think you could cheat me out of my money so easily!?" Strauss began advancing towards me, and I would hear the frightened whimpering of both Vinyl and Octavia from the club entrance. "After I'm done with you, I can't have any witnesses, now can I? Those little harlots of your will have to die, too!" He pulled out his revolver and had raised it about halfway before I put a round each in his chest and head. The gore splattered all over the cars behind him, followed shortly by blood pooling around his dead body. I pulled my phone back out and said, "Disregard, threat neutralized." I hung up the phone before Rick could respond.

I turned around to see both women staring at me in absolute shock. My brain took a few moments to register exactly what I had just done, and when I faced towards the body of Mikael Strauss, all the adrenaline that had been present when I shot him disappeared instantly, replaced by a sense of absolute wrongness. I dropped my gun and fell to my knees before I began to hyperventilate. My eyes started to water as the realization sunk in.

'I just killed another human being... What have I done?' I did the only thing that I felt was possible: I dropped to my knees and broke down into tears, my soul screaming out at the violation against nature I had just committed. I could barely see the asphalt beneath my knees from my tear-blurred vision as I let out all of my guilt at once. Sometime during this, I even vomited the entire contents of my stomach. I don't know how long I stayed there before the police arrived. I hear voices, but they were muffled and garbled. I felt hands grab me and didn't resist as I was guided inside the club. It was several minutes before I stopped crying, my first sight being a very sad looking Vinyl, who had removed her glasses. She put a glass of something in front of me, from which I could make out the smell of alcohol. I didn't say a word as I slammed back whatever drink she had given me, feeling the mild burn of the liquor travel down my throat. I set the glass down and pulled my hands up onto the counter, resting my head on them, only to start staring at the illuminated wall of the bar.

Vinyl reached out with one hand, placing it on my shoulder. I responded by placing my own hand on top of it. I noticed that her hands were very soft, despite her apparent profession. I looked over at the same hand and saw that same ethereal glow around it, albeit much dimmer. I made a point of learning what people's auras meant, but this wasn't an aura from what I could tell. She spoke, and I looked at her as she did so.

"Thanks... For saving me and 'Tavi, i mean." She said, her somewhat ragged-sounding voice calming me a bit. I stared into her red eyes for a short while as she continued. "I don't know who that guy was, but the police said he was after you..." She fell silent for a bit, looking away from me.

I lightly grasped Vinyl's hand, drawing her attention. I proceeded to explain exactly why Mikael had shown up at the club. I had no idea how he had found me, since I was on the other side of town. I told her how I'd been trying to keep the band he was managing afloat and how not even ten minutes before she called me, he had been arrested for conspiracy to commit grand theft, as well as extortion, employee neglect, and the always wonderful threat of bodily harm. Her eyes widened at the last one.

"You saw him, though." I laughed hollowly. "I bet that man had never seen the inside of a gym in his life. I used to regularly lift and drag heavy machinery for eight hours a day." I looked at the glass, which Vinyl had refilled, along with pouring one for herself. We clinked our glasses, slammed them on the bar, and tossed back our respective shots. "I suppose the police wanted to talk to me?" I asked quietly.

"Actually, Mister Cross," I heard a male voice from behind me say. I turned around to see a police captain behind me. "I would be trying to arrest you for drinking underage, but I found your old service record." He moved to sit down next to me. "Thank you for your service to our country. Let me buy you a drink, since you'll be twenty-one in," He looked at his watch. "Five hours by my clock. I can let this slide."

I stared at the captain in disbelief. "Captain say what now?" I was still in a minor stupor from my previous actions. "Where did you get access to my military records, if I may ask? I left on a general discharge..." I started going through ideas before facepalming as the information came to me. "Public government records can bite me now... I hate the Internet."

The captain laughed before reaching out his right hand. "Captain Frank Ramos."

I took his hand and shook it, replying. "Maximus Cross."

"Well, Mister Cross, if you'll excuse me, I have other laws to enforce." Captain Ramos clapped me on my shoulder. "If you ever want to talk about what happened, just come down to the station. I doubt the late mister Strauss will care very much."

I waved goodbye to Captain Ramos and moved to push my red sunglasses back down, only to find that they weren't present. I sighed before returning my attention to Vinyl. "You wouldn't happen to have seen my glasses, have you?"

Author's Note:

And here's another chapter! Word to the wise, or at least the sane... I do not recommend chugging a can of NOS right before writing. My brain wouldn't slow down all day...

And why only thumbs down...?
Meh, it's nice to see a positive/negative system in place on this site. FanFiction could take a leaf from your book, FiMFiction... Unless y'all are the same people O_o

That said, hopefully I improved this time, yeah?


Che cosa voi?- "What do you want?"

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